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Old 06-17-2005, 11:24 AM   #1
merchtemeagle
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apt-get: don't resolve dependencies?


I've got an old PC where I want to install Linux on. I searched a bit for good distributions for old systems and found most are debian based (Damn Small Linux, Feather). Except for VectorLinux which is Slackware but has a package manager based on apt-get.
I could also just install Slackware, which is what I'm using at my PC, but I would like to try some different distributions.

Now, my question is: does apt-get always resolve dependencies, or can I pass a flag to tell it not to?
My first distro was SuSe and I found it very annoying. If I had, for example, a rpm with a newer version of an app, but the rpm's name was not the same as the one installed, I had to remove the old version and install the new one. But if it was an application that was in the base system, Yast would not let me remove it.

I really was a newbie and maybe this can be done in SuSe, but I made a post about it here and people advised me to go to Slackware if this was an issue for me.

I've heard lots of good stuff of Debian, so I hope the dependency resolving can be controlled.
 
Old 06-17-2005, 11:42 AM   #2
mrcheeks
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apt-get does i think always resolve dependencies, so you don't have to worry about the packages you install...broken packages, broken software...
 
Old 06-17-2005, 11:58 AM   #3
craigevil
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"The best packaging system in the world.
Tired of old files from software three versions old cluttering your system? Or installing a piece of software only to find it causes your system to crash because of software conflicts? Dpkg, Debian's endured packaging system, takes care of these issues for you."
http://www.debian.org/intro/why_debian
 
Old 06-17-2005, 12:53 PM   #4
Dead Parrot
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Quote:
does apt-get always resolve dependencies, or can I pass a flag to tell it not to?
The primary package management tool in Debian is called dpkg -- it is used for installing and removing packages and it manages dependencies automatically. If you want to install or remove some packages without their dependencies, you can use dpkg with the "--ignore-depends=packagename" option. Dpkg has an ncurses frontend called dselect.

Another frontend to dpkg is called apt and the command line interface for apt is called apt-get. Debian sorts dependencies into three categories: depends, recommends, and suggests. Depends are the necessary dependencies without which the package won't work. Recommends are dependencies that are not exactly necessary but they often add important functions to applications. Suggests are not really dependencies at all, they are just remotely related or alternatives to the package in question.

AFAIK, apt-get only manages depends, not recommends or suggests. There are also other apt frontends, like aptitude and synaptic, and these can manage also the recommends in addition to the necessary depends.

If you decide to stick with Debian, you'll find out that there are always many alternatives to choose from in Debian. For a beginner this abundance of choices may make things difficult at first, but when you get some experience you'll also realize that all these choices will give you the kind of freedom that some other distros with less choices cannot offer.

Last edited by Dead Parrot; 06-17-2005 at 01:51 PM.
 
Old 06-17-2005, 12:56 PM   #5
BaptismOfFire
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The only reason a dependancy will not be resolved is if it is not in your sourece.

eg I am installing Xorg. Which requires libgcc1 v 1.4.

but in my current sources that remains unresolved as it is not listed.
 
Old 06-17-2005, 02:36 PM   #6
jonaskoelker
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<nitpick>
Quote:
three categories: depends, recommends, and suggests
It actually has four (if not more): your three + pre-depends. A predepends on B if B needs no be installed in order to install (not run!) A.

Say, if the installer script for A is written in perl, it pre-depends on perl (and might not `normal-depend' on it at all).
</nitpick>

--Jonas
 
Old 06-17-2005, 02:49 PM   #7
merchtemeagle
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Thanks for all the replies. Looks like I can try a Debian based distro .
Does anyone has a really good link that explains all this in detail?
 
Old 06-17-2005, 03:11 PM   #8
jonaskoelker
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Two good places to start would be:
1) www.debian.org
2) www.google.com

hth --Jonas
 
  


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